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272 Notes and Documents ^- ^- h. e. 

cipal for a number of years; they give a brief description of 
Gottfried Duden's farm which is located near the present town 
of Dutzow in Missouri, the farm around which Duden's para- 
disaical account centers ; they furnish a detailed description of 
the hardships and reverses which many of the "Latin farmers" 
of these early days endured. 

Among these documents is also one by Eduard Zimmermann, 
giving a most unique account of an excursion into the Missouri 
Valley in October, 1833 ; it also gives a most fascinating accoimt 
of life in St. Louis under the just named date. 

O. G. LlBBY 
A DlAEiT OF THE WaB OF 1812 

The document which follows is a fragment of a diary kept by 
one of the scouts who participated in the campaign for the relief 
of Detroit and Fort Wayne in August and September, 1812. It 
was procured by the writer of these lines from Mrs. Thomas 
McCluer, of 'Fallon, Missouri, in September, 1912. Mrs. Mc- 
Cluer is a granddaughter of Major Nathan Heald, who com- 
manded at Fort Wayne, Fort Dearborn, and other northwestern 
posts in the period prior to the War of 1812. There is no clue 
to the author of the diary aside from its contents. Evidently 
the diarist was a Kentuckian serving as a scout in the Seven- 
teenth United States Infantry, commanded by Colonel Samuel 
Wells. Evidently, too, he was a man possessed of native in- 
telligence and some education. Aside from its detailed infor- 
mation concerning the campaign in question, the diary is of in- 
terest as alTording a typical illustration of the way border Avar- 
fare was conducted at its best by the American militia forces of 
a century ago. 


The Diary, August 15 — September 30, 1812 

Governor's hou[se], in testimon[y] of the commander's respee[t] for 
that venerable old ma[n].^^ 

32 The earlier pages of the diary have disappeared. The frequent omissions in 
the entries of the first few days are due to the dilapidated condition of the first two 
pages that remain. The diary opens at Georgetown, Kentucky, August 14, 1812, 
where the Kentucky forces intended for the relief of General Hull rendezvoused. For 
a fuller account of the circumstances attending the opening entries, see the Ken- 

Vol. I, No. 2 ^4 Diary of the War of 1812 273 

[August] 15'h [1812] 
Joined by three Militia Regiment under the comma [nd] of Col"^ 
Scott, Lewis and Allen"" — These Reg*^ wer[e] composed of Volun- 
teers & have been since called by Gen' Harrison the cream of Ky ^* — 
16"^ A General review of all the troops by Gov. Scott and Gen'« Win- 
chester and Payne "^ — We this day listened to an eloquent and patriotic 
oration delivered by that great & worthy statesman Henry Clay."" 


Two Companies of Regul[ar] troops f [MS. torn] the com [3£S. torn] 
Hightow[n MS. torn] on this day [MS. torn] the Regulars [le]ft G. 
Town for New-Port marched 5 miles and encamped for the night. 


Resumed the march at an early hour and continued our march till 
night No. of miles not recollected. 

19th 20, 21, 22 

Still on our march to New-Port, on the 2-3'''^ arrived at the Place, 
where we drew Guns, tents and the necessary camp equipment — Our 
march from G. Town to N-Port was very disagreeable owing to contin- 
ued rian falling on us every day. 

24*h & 25«'' 

Lieing in the [barrac]ks at New Port. Nothing [MS. torn] drawing 

guns [MS. torn] pany camp 

[2] 6"' 

Crossed the [Ohio River] [t]rave[l]ed 5 miles where we [l]ay on the 

27 & 28 While we lay here we reeei[ved] the intellegence of the fa [11] 

of Fort-Dearborn and the massacre of the company [of] inhabitants — 

We also heard of Fort-Wayne being beseiged by the Indians "' — Here 

tuclcy Gagette, August 18, 1812, copied in National Intelligencer of September 1-5, 

33 Colonels John M. Scott, William Lewis, and John Allen. 

3'i"The troops which I have with me, and those which are coming on from Ken- 
tucky, are, perhaps, the best materials for forming an army that the world has pro- 
duced. But no equal number of men were ever collected who knew so little of mili- 
tary discipline. . . ." Harrison to the secretary of war, August 28, 1812, printed 
in M. Dawson, Historical Narrative of the Civil and Military Services of Major-Gen- 
eral Harrison (Cincinnati, 1824), 283. 

38 Brigadier-general John Payne. He assumed command of the entire brigade, 
comprising the militia regiments of Scott, Lewis, and Allen, and Colonel Wells' regi- 
ment of regulars. 

36 Clay's address is briefly summarized in the article iu the National Intelligencer 
cited supra, n. 32. 

37 Port Dearborn was evacuated and the garrison overwhelmed Angust 15. The 
siege of Fort AVayne was begun some days later. The news of these events seems to 

274 Notes and Doctiments ^i- ^'- H- e. 

I must indulge myself with a few thoughts — I suppose it was on ac- 
count of our Genl* disputing for rank that we were detained so many 
days in the neighbourhood, When one of our out Posts was harrassed by 
the Savages — Gen' "Winchester in the first place took the command 
from Gen' Pay[ne] which he did not retain lon[g] Gov. Harrison came 
up [to?] us here with a Breve[tJ commission from [3IS. torn] a[s] 
Major Gen' [of Ky. andj took the comma[nd from Gen'] Winches- 
ter^* — On th[e] 29"' under orders from Gen' Harrison we set out for 
Piqua — On 30*'' passed thi'ough Lebanon and on the 31*' arrived at 

September 1*', 1812 
On the 1**, 2"<', and S''**, we marched from Dayton to Piqua — Nothing 
occurred on the march on these t[h]ree days of note. 

4"' and 5"' 
We lay at Piqua these two days, on the latter the whole of the troops 
Avere drawn up to hear the Gen' speak to [th]em on the propriety of 
[di]sipline.'''° The cause of this [speec]h was the want of Sub [3IS. 
torn] in the Militia [regimen] ts. 

6"' of Septbr, 
The whole of the troops marched for St. Mary's today, the 17 R. still 
in the front — 

7th & gt" 

On the first marching on to the St. Mary's — and on the latter ar- 
rived at the said place — Here the troops for the first time were con- 
solidated *" — Provisions being scarce the Gen' spoke to the army to 
know whether they were willing to go on to relieve Fort-Wayne, on half 
rations — The whole army were willing to go on these terms. 

We marched a mile and a half and encamped. 

Early this morning we took up the line of march and reached the 2"'' 

have been brought to Picqiia by Stephen Ruddell, whence his message was conveyed 
to Harrison at Cincinnati. See Harrison's letter of August 28, in Dawson, Harrison, 
284, and Euddell's report in the Kentucky Gazette, September 1, 1812. 

38 The author 's surmise as to the cause of the delay at Cincinnati is probably un- 
founded. The dispute between Winchester and Harrison developed later. 

39 For an account of this event see K. B. McAfee, History of the Late War in the 
Western Country (Lexington, 1816), 121, 122. 

40 The force with Harrison was joined by Colonel Allen's regiment and a corps 
of mounted volunteei-s under Colonel E. M. Johnson. McAfee, War in the Western 
Country, 122. 

Vol. I, No. 2 ^ Diary of the War of 1812 275 

crossing of the St. Mary's a little after dusk. 17 miles to day — At 
this place we overtook 600 of the Ohio Militia, who had set out for the 
releif of Port-Wayne — They had reached this place several days be- 
fore this, btit were affraid to go on and do what they had set out to 
do — The beleif was that the Devil in the shape of Indians wovild be 
seen before they could reach the place of destination — These six hun- 
dred men being well mounted, a fine opportunity presented itsself to 
surprise the enemy and take their women and children — But this op- 
portunity was lost for the want of resolution in the men [who] com- 
posed this six hundred — These troops were under the command of 
Co' Adams, a man who had seen service in fighting Indians, 

lltli & 12th 

On the first of these days we marched without any thing of note hap- 
pening, except a small party of our spies of whom I was one, had a 
long pursuit after some Indians — One of the Indians -were killed but 
not found at that time — He was afterwards found by some of our hors- 
men as they passed along *^ — This small party of mounted men under 
the command of James Sucketf^ — a man of undoubted courage, with 
six spies were order [ed] by the Gen' to go to F. W. and return to him 
the same night, if the thing could be done in safety — After the pur- 
suit of the Indians was over, we thought it the most prudent to return — 
When we got to camp the army was busily engaged in throwing up a 
breast work for the first time — This encampment is the most noted of 
any camp since w-e have been in the feild — It has since been called 
fori fight-on — The centinels fired the greater part of the night, and at 
some times a whole platoon of them would fire at a time — It is my 
opinion that there was a great [d]eal more fear in camp this nigh[t] 
than there -was any need for The watch word was very much abused — 
it was on account of the watchword, that the camp took its name.*^ 

On the latter, we se [t] out at an early hour, and continued our march 
till we reached Fort- Wayne — This day we expected to fight at the five 
mile swamp where we expected the enemy would endeavour to surprise 
us — The line of Battle was formed at the five mile swamp on account 
of an alarm — On our arrival at the Fort we found that the enemy had 
left it and fled to their swamps and thickets for safety. They had 

41 For a fuller contemporary account of this incident see narrative of John D. 
White, in W. A. Brice, History of Fort Wayne (Fort Wayne, 1868), 221. 

42 Variously spelled Sugget, Suggette, and Suchett. He was a member of Colonel 
Johnson 's battalion, from Scott County, Kentucky. 

43 For a fuller account of the way the army passed this night see White's narra- 
tive in Brice, History of Fort Wayne, 222. 

276 Notes and Documents m. v. h. e. 

destroyed all the stock and a great deal of the corn of the Inhabitants 
about the Fort — The late Cap' Wells,** who fell at Chicago, was pre- 
vious to his going to Chicago an inhabitant at this place — His stock 
was destroyed and his houses bvirnt to ashes — all the houses in the 
vacinity of the garrison were either burnt by the enemy or by the Com- 
manding officer — The place looked dessolate. 

On this day we lay here making preperations to send out two detach- 


This day a detachment of about one thousand men under the com- 
mand of Col" "Wells set out for the Puttawattamy villiage on the Elk- 
heart River 55 miles North West from Fort Wayne — marched 10 miles 

and encamped withiout water. 


We took up the march at or a little after day light and passed the 
head waters of the wabash, through an oak, pararie country — This day 
we passed six very pretty little Lakes, which the officers named — 
Lakes, Harrison, Payne, Wells and Scott were four of the names — This 
day we marched between 25 and 30 miles and encamped on a beautiful 
peace of ground, with a small little rivulett near us. 


By the break of day we were on the line of march, travelled three 
miles and struck the twelve mile swamp, where we supposed we should 
have to tight the enemy if they were apprised of our coming — We 
passed the swamp and crossed the Elkheart River without finding an 
enemy — After we had crossed the River We had three miles to go before 
we reached the town, through an entirely open country, (that is,) clear 
of all undergroath — The town was situated at the South end of an ex- 
tensive pararie — On the right of the town was a pararie five or six 
miles accross, and on the left an oak peace of ground, which bordered on 
the River. The mode of approaching the town — The greater part of 
the horsemen M^ere ordered to pass around the town to the left, the bal- 
ance on the right — The Infantry approached the town in two columns, 
between the two flanking parties — We approached in silence, in as 
much as we expected to find Indians in the villiage — But we were dis- 
appointed, they had left the place about ten days before our visit. 

The houses, com and other vegitables were immediately destroyed 

** Captain William Wells was a brother of Colonel Samuel Wells, commander of 
the Seventeenth United States Infantry in this campaign. 

Vol. I, No. 2 J Diary of the War of 1812 211 

It is supposed that we destroyed 60 acres of green corn — In the even- 
ing we returned .3 miles and encamped on the bank of the River. 

ITti^ and IS*'' 

These tow days we marched back to I'ort-Wayne *^ — Col" Wells 
w^as ordered by Gen' Harrison to destroy the Little Turtles town 
as he went or returned, he chose to burn the latter place as he returned 
— When it was known by the Ohio Militia, and Ky troops, that the Col° 
intended to go by another town, and as provissions were scarce, many of 
them were unwilling to go — This unwillingness was communicated to 
the Col" by the respective officers of the different corps — Some of the 
Ohio troops refused to go to the town — and on the 18"* one company 
marched without orders, but was stopped by the Col" — As provisions 
had grown scarce, and no road leading directly to the town, and as the 
Militia were unwilling to go the Col" thought it most prudent to re- 
turn — On the 18 I went after my aiTival at Fort- Wayne to show or 
rather assist in leading Col" Simerals Regt of Ky. Horse to destroy the 
Turtles town — Here we destroyed a great quantity of com and other 
vegitables and returned to P W. on the 19"*. 

19'h 20*, and 21^', 

On these three days we lay at Fort- Wayne — And on the 20"' Gen' 
Harrison surrendered up the command of the troops to Brg. Gen' Win- 
chester ^'^ — Nothing happened on the 21^'. 


Three Regt*^ of Ky. U [ ?] Militia and four companies of Regulars of 
the 17 U. S. Infty, and Capt Garrard's troop of hoi'se formed the whole 
force of our army, that set out to day on their march down the Miami 
Rivier of the Lake " — marched 3 miles and encamped. 


To day the army marched about 8 miles and encamped Nothing of 
importance happened to day. 

24«> and 25"' 

On the first of these days M"^ Audrain and myself were orde[re]d by 

<5 For additioDal details coneerning Wells' foray see McAfee, War in the Wester)t 
Country, 128-131. 

*|5 Apparently the diarist has made a mistake of one day; see Dawson, Harrison, 
29.5 for Harrison's letter of September 19, relinquishing the command to Winchester. 

*7 On relinquishing the command Harrison withdrew to the St. Mary 's and then 
to Picqua, to prepare a mounted force for an expedition from Fort Wayne by an 
unusual route against Detroit. Winchester advanced with the army down the Mau- 
mee to meet the British-Indian force under Major Muir which had set out from De- 

278 Notes and Documents m. v. h. e. 

the Gen' to go to Col" Jennings ** with dispatches — We travelled all day, 
throng a swampy, brushy country, passed tow very large trails of In- 
dians about ten days old — this night we lay in the woods — On the 25"* 
we travelled all day and arrived in the evening at St Mary's, where we 
were informed that Col" Jennings had left there on his march for De- 
fiance — We took his trail and pursued till night and before we reached 
his camp my comrade, being at a little distance from me was attacked 
by a small party of Indians, knocked down and beat considerably before 
he could extricate himself — But on all of them except one, leaving him 
to take me, he turned upon his enemy and got away from him. 

On the 24"', the army '"' marched without any occurrence. 

On the 25*'' Ensign James Leggette, an officer of the 17 E, w-ho was 
acting as an officer in a spy company, was with 4 men killed and 
scalped ^" — Ensign Leggette was a young man of much merit, and bid 
fair to be a great machine in the fighting department. 

26th 27th 28'" 29"' 

On the first of these days Capt Ballard, who commanded a Spy com- 
pany had a small engagement with the Indians, but lost no men. 

At another time the Capt had another small engagement with the[m] 
had one man wounded but got him otf to camp — Not being with the 
army at this time can not enter into particulars ^"^ — On the 29*'' M'' 
Audrain and myself got to camp after having been absent 5 days, - — 
We were the first men that viewed the point. 


This day we marched within one mile and a half of old Fort De- 
fiance. ^^ 

troit to assist in the capture of Port Wayne. For an account of the movements at 
this stage of the campaign see McAfee, War in the Western Country, 132, et seq. 

*8 At St. Mary's. On Jennings' movements see Dawson, Harrison, 296-298. 

19 That is, Winchester 's army. The diarist was absent from the army from 
September 24 to 29. 

50 On the killing of Liggett and his party see McAfee, War in the Western Coun- 
try, 134, 135. 

51 An account of these various conflicts is given in ihid., 135. 

52 With this entry tlie diary abruptly closes. Winchester fortified himself at this 
place, awaiting reenforcements and supplies before continuing the advance on De- 
troit. Meanwhile, by an order of September 17, Harrison was given command of the 
army in the Northwest, and the forces under Winchester were turned over to him 
October 3. The further fortunes of the campaign do not concern us here, although it 
may be noted in closing that almost a year elapsed before Detroit was retaken by 
the Americans.